Saturday, January 16, 2010

And she pleaded, Don't Cut Your Hair

My Sisterlocks are well known at my school, more amongst the students than the teachers.  In class, I get to educate the students about my hair, natural hair, types of locks, and especially the care and maintenance.  Boys and girls alike of all races ask lots of questions.

We had picture re-takes this past Thursday and on Monday night, I called myself shampooing, oiling (this Texas weather is crazy) and bantuing my locks to have a nice snazzy style for my pics and to have a good 6yr photo.  Well, I got tired/lazy and only bantu'd the front.  I didn't take a picture of what it looked like, because my camera is dead, but the kids immediately noticed the curls up front.  As usual, my AA boys and girls, mostly, "Ms. E., your I like your hair!"  They love, love, love, when I curl my locks or do something different other than free style.  I don't blame em.  I guess looking at me could get a little boring day after day with little or no changes other than wardrobe.

Two of my female students walked by looking in amazement commented how different my locks looked.  I swear, only the front 4 inches back were curly.  The back was pulled up into a pony tail, that oddly looked awfully long down my back that day.  One said, "Would you cut off your locks?"   I said, "I've thought about it and I might."  The other jumped in, "Don't cut off your hair!  They're so long!"  This one rarely talks, but had something to say about my pondering of cutting my locks.  Mind you both girls have perms, which they actually keep up and pulled back in ponys nicely.

But, there's something about long hair.  And I think as well, there's something about knowing that the long hair a black girl/woman sees as real, meaning that person's hair, is amazing.  I'm not going to lie, when I look at pictures of my locks or see the back in the mirror, I am truly amazed.  You have to  understand, I've had hair care drama my ENTIRE life.  Even before I knew what hair meant to me as a little black girl, I found out the hard way.

If you see how my hair looked straight, or with a bald fade, or with my Q-Braid extensions, you'd know it's been a journey.  From Day # 1 with my Sisterlocks to today, has been quite a journey.  So those of you who have daughters, neices, cousins, friends, don't preach, just model before them the love you have for your locks and having natural hair.  Show them you can be sexy, confident, educated, accomplished, and beautiful with your hair in its natural state.  And even if I decide to cut my locks one day, I do have the confidence to know it will indeed grow back as long as I want it to.

Those of you who teach or are around young children, especially girls, what has been your experience with them and your locks?  Please share.


Brown ButtahFly said...

Please dont cut your hair, your locks are beautiful. However it is your hair, like you said it will grow back.

Although I know preaching to my close family about going natural hasn't helped much I still try, lol. I guess over the years they will see how I love my hair and how healthy it is, it might change their minds.

Lalaboobaby said...

I loved your post regarding the students comments. I wouldn't cut them either, but you have to do what works best for you. I've considered that once my Sisterlocks get midback, that will be my limit for length.

dewdrop said...

It's so awesome that you are sharing with your students the culture of our hair whether in speech or action, and that's admirable. This will definitely influence their view of beauty and black hair for the rest of their lives. My favorite line of yours is "don't preach, just model". Kudos to you Maryee!

NappyTexanGirl said...

This is such a great post!! I am not around kids as much as you are of course, but I am constantly stressing the importance of self-love and self pride to my neices and nephews whenever we see each other.

Maryee said...


Yes, it will grow back. Your family will come around. It may be slow turning the titanic, but they will come around, one by one.


The beauty of having long locks, is you can always through them into a pony. The problem with that is it makes you REAL lazy, or shall I say make ME real lazy. I'll see what happens by this summer.


My students always impress me when I think they aren't listening. They are funny, because they'll recap date, time, and lesson about something I've taught. They listen when they choose to. I love 'em.


Keep encouraging the babies. When we share our good news, they then have something to negotiate when making important decisions on their own.

Thanks ladies for dropping by!!!!

NaTruly Me said...

I love this story. I think that our young people need to see tangible proof that our natural hair is beautiful. I had that proof in my mother but she and I have different textures of hair and could not wear the same styles. I am glad that your students love your locks as much as you do.

Maryee said...

NaTruly Me,

Thank you. I think many young girls would love to have locks, but they would rather have it straight and long instead of locked and long. But being available for them to see how wonderful having locked hair is, I'm sure will make an impact.

Term Papers,

Since mine are at/below my bra strap, it is definitely new territory for me. Let me know what you come up with when you get to that point.